No, this is not a Malaysian minister indulging in the national ministerial pastime of venting spleen at the Western media for a change.
It is, in fact, Indonesian Minister for Health Siti Fadilah Supari who was apparently in a foul mood after the President ordered her to do her job and tak care of Dede, dubbed the Tree Man because of some rare medical condition.
Siti was mad with Discovery Channel and Fox for “exploiting” Dede’s misfortune and featuring him in their reports, according to the Banjarmasin Post.
You have to wonder though whether Dede would have got the kind of attention from the Health Minister and her minions if Discovery and Fox had not “exploited” Dede.
Indonesian blogs are full of reports that an Indonesian hacker called GatCrash has managed to hack the Malaysian website at www.heritage.gov.my. It was apparently retribution for malaysia’s appropriation of Reog Ponorogo.By the time Unspun checked the website looked normal but some Indonesian bloggers seem to think that since I’m from Malaysia I should know whether this is all true. Well, I don’t but I an sure some Malaysian blogging brudder out there can enlighten us.
If true, would this be a first cyber skirmish between both countries?
Yes folks, the Malaysians are pissing off the Indonesians once again with their apparent “appropriation” of yet another Indonesian cultural ite, from this report by The malaysian (Oi, bro don’t call Indonesians Indons because they don’t like it lah).
As Unspun‘s explained before, all this is probably because of the difference in the definition of “Malay” between Malaysians and Indonesians (see here).
In the meantime Unspun‘s recalling what one of his readers told him some time ago: With all this appropriation of culture from Indonesia perhaps the Malaysian Tourism Board should change its logo to: Malaysia. Truly Indonesia! LOL
Just came back from a short visit back to Bolehland and as usual am quite depressed by the place while relishing the food there.
The big event that occurred this trip was the demonstration by about 20,000 Malaysians Indians of the Hindu faith demanding, of all things, RM 14 trillion compensation from the UK for bringing indentured laborers to Malaysia country and exploiting them for the last 150 years.
The idea of the class action suit that the leaders of the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) is so out of nowhere that everyone sees through the ruse. It was an attempt by dissenting leaders of the Indian community in Malaysia to send a strong message of protest against Samy Vellu, who has been the leader of the Malaysian Indian Congress(MIC) since the dinosaurs walked the earth. The MIC is an Indian-based (non-Malaysians may find all this racial references strange but the truth is that race is the ingle most important factor in Malaysian politics) party that is part of the ruling Barisian Nasional coalition and it claims to represent the Indian community.
The problem, however, is that Samy Vellu – like many long-serving leaders of the Barisan – has been so comfortable that he has failed to look after the interests of the Indian community. Many of the Indian community in Malaysia were shipped over by the British as indentured laborers to work in rubber estates.
Although some of the Indians in Malaysia have done well – including Ananda Krishnan, who’s touted as the richest man in Malaysia and part Indian Mahathir Mohamad, who managed to convince the Malays that he was not an Indian and rode the coattails of Malay nationalism to become prime minister – most of the Indians, who are mostly Tamils, have had a rough ride. (more…)
Unspun must be aging as he catches himself increasingly muttering to himself the Oscar Wilde quote that “youth is wasted on the young.”Another sign of aging is that Unspun found this article in the International Herald Tribute quite touching. What can one say? “I’m old, I’m old. I wear my trousers rolled.”
At the request of reader Bonar, Unspun starts today a series elaborating the dishonest tricks used in argument, as outlined by R.H. Thouless in his book Straight and Crooked Thinking.
The first trick Thouless talks about is:
#1 The use of emotionally toned words
This is a trick that is very common indeed, especially in hot topics where strong views are involved. We saw it early in the Rasa Not So Sayang, for instance. It consists of using words aimed to disparage or put the other person in a bad light, usually by imputing a negative quality or intention on th e other person.
So in Rasa not so Sayang we had these emotional words being bandied about:
Indonesians toward Malaysians: trouble maker, maling,
Malaysians toward Indonesians: bodoh punya bangsa Indon, indon goblok gonjol
Such words, when used intentionally or not, cause the other person to feel hurt and retaliate. The problem is that if you feel hurt and angry and retaliate, you begin to lose the argument because if you are angry the tendency is to also use emotional words back at the person. When these happens the argument starts to become a verbal brawl where both sides aren’t interested in getting any truth or understanding out of the exchange but to defend their psyches, often by hurthing the other person with similar emotional words.
The solution, says, Thouless, is to translate the statement into emotionally neutral words.
So the defense for maling might be “…without proper permission“, trouble maker could be substituted with provocative or unwittingly causing grief, bodoh and goblok could be substituted with words such as uninformed or misguided actions.
This way emotions are not inflamed and everyone has enough goodwill to find a common understanding or solution to the issue at hand. That, surely should be the purpose of argument, to discover common ground or new understanding. Unless of course you’re iseng…
There’s apparently another English-language newspaper in town. This time it is a mouthful – The Jakarta Morning Observer – to give competition to the venerable The Jakarta Post and The Point, a newcomer itself.According to Moch Kurniawan, who works at The Jakarta Post, the Observer is starting life as a supplement in The Investor Daily and Suara Pembaruan, before taking a life of its own as an English-language paper proper. The managing editor of this new rag is Kanisius Dursin, the former features editor of The Jakarta Post.
All this is very interesting but the real story here is the Lippo group’s expansion into the media sector. It now owns Investor Daily, Suara Pembaruan (which makes them part owners of The jakarta Post), Globe Asia, Investor Magazine, View and Kabelvision, Direct Vision, First Media and I don’t know what else.
Why the move into media? There is a power play among the big groups in the media industry but it gets very little attention from the media (because they are afraid they’ll be acquired, because people in glass houses…?)
Interesting to watch who will emerge as the new media barons in Indonesia and what the regulators have to say about it.
Traditionally the hacks do it with a farewell pissup but Claire, who’s been in Jakarta for many years, and a teetotaler, is choosing to do hers with raising money for a cause.Been fun to have had her in Jakarta as she’s one hell of a business journo. We’ll all miss you Claire. Good luck.
Former State Secretary Yusril Izha Mahendra, who has been converted into a blogger recently, is embracing his new role with gusto. He’s waded into Indonesia Matters to answer his critics’s allegations about his life and policies when in the Cabinet. Those of you who relish a good argument can go there to watch the “conversation” unfold, blow for blow. Unspun feels for Yusril though since many of his critics are hiding behind a veil of anonymity, which can sometimes free them from the constraints of good manners and honest argument.
On the home front, Yusril’s also completed his makeover. He’s moved to WordPress, a better blogging platform that Blogspot. He’s also changed the header of his blog to photos of him starring in the movie Cheng Ho.
Scrap iron vendors. At least that’s what the city thinks, as reported in yesterday’s edition of The Jakarta Post:
In response to worsening traffic congestion along Jl. Mangga Besar I, the West Jakarta administration plans to evict dozens of scrap iron vendors who operate in the area.
The head of the West Jakarta Public Order Agency, Abidin Mustofa, said Tuesday scrap iron vendors who had constructed stalls on the banks of the Ciliwung river would also be evicted.
the vendors know better. Listen to Pohak below: